What the world needs now

Is another pop singer, like I need need to read another obtuse article on Web 2.0.  Nevertheless, I do think we need a new way to look at web 2.0/enterprise 2.0 and Jeff’s piece prompted me to finally write something on this. The challenge is the current labels are just BIG and somewhat empty – is the technology? The application? The deployment model? What’s WOA?

Not that these new modes of development and use of mashups don’t produce value, because they are and will grow in value, but the label is just a little too cutesy for traditional business folk to be readily supportive, IMHO. A software analyst, at a leading analyst firm, recently noted that when [tag]Enterprise 2.0[/tag] was coined it’s genesis was sorta tongue and cheek, not sure how he knows, but he said so and I believe it and thats it. Relationships can taint any reality, which might be why Web 2.0/Enterprise 2.0 is such a big and hot topic, since it is as much about the workplace as it is about people which has this egalitarian feel to it and phreaks business people out, so does spelling words with PH.

If you don’t think folks are backlashing against the cool nomenclature, then you might not be paying attention and Andy’s blog would not have the “if a tree falls in the woods” feel, which at times seems more tempered than evangelistic. Admittedly I read it and I clearly am hearing the tree fall along with 1000’s of others, but the core concern for me is how to take this stuff seriously and deliver an actionable plan/platform for businesses. The answer? It could be as simple as a new name, yup, marketing 101. It might not be THE answer, but could be AN approach to refine the space, since I’m not sure the 2.0 will be “jettisoned” and I think we will get a 3.0 soon enough from some smart person. Right now, we might as well talk to the concept as “Super cool stuff you can do online for your business and you users”.

So what would this new thing be labeled? The common theme is share infrastructure, combined function and pervasive content consumption and creation by users. So this is my stab at it the New, Improved, Faster y mejor suave look at these applications:

Enterprise Internet Asset Platforms: Manages the interaction of corporate assets in a distributed framework from multiple vendors. These applications and frameworks manage the content, users and functionality in a secure environment on demand based on individual configuration driven by role based productivity needs within an enterprise’s given governance model.

These platforms represent frameworks and deployment models which allow for use of best-in class feature delivery at the user level, ultimately delivering user specific productivity enhancements not available in monolithic business applications, but also include features and capabilities from traditional enterprise applications.

I’m not married to this market definition, but directionally I think this is what is needed. We need a less nebulous way to speak to this than Enterprise 2.0. Enterprise 2.0 is too big and requires you to sell down the value, when starting with a set of known things and selling up into the vision is a whole lot easier. Just my random idea on how to ignite [tag]E2.0[/tag] and reduce the confusion.

So let’s think about how we can better package the concept around real business problems and address the concerns of opening up the enterprise to social computing, which is both inside and outside of the enterprise. The concepts of user based application selection for many reasons may challenge traditional thinking, but if users could carry their knowledge, applications and networks to a new business this has to bring value to organizations.

The first real application to think about enabling Facebook for businesses which has received attention of late is Workbook. Workbook however needs a little help with their product description, but if their marketing guy or gal can move away from the verbiage below and couch it in an ROI it could go hockey stick:

WorkBook: Secure Facebook for the Enterprise

WorkBook – a secure enterprise overlay for Facebook. [tag]WorkBook[/tag] allows employees to securely interact with their peers using the hugely-popular Facebook service. WorkBook combines all the capabilities of Facebook with all the controls of a corporate environment, including integration with existing enterprise security services and information sources. With WorkBook, employees can find and stay in touch with corporate colleagues, publish company-related news, create bookmarks to enterprise application data and securely share the bookmarks with authorized colleagues, update on status change and get general company news. Employees can freely use Facebook, with the WorkBook overlay, with no danger of information leaking outside the organization or access being granted to unauthorized personnel.


Just a little too techno-centric for more my decision making, but someone has to start the discussion and Facebook [tag]governance[/tag] is as good a place as anywhere to start.

Where and when are you going to start?

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  • Reply Jeff Nolan December 22, 2007 at 7:33 pm

    Obtuse? Surely you must be referring to my post having an angle of greater than 90 but less than 180 degrees? Otherwise I might think you were calling me stupid, dimwitted or moronic.

  • Reply G December 23, 2007 at 4:13 am

    More like not sharp, acute, or pointed; blunt in form. Your article is probably 162 degrees, but in general E2.0 is not that pointed a concept and more conceptual than actionable.

    On the remainder of your comment, not sure that stupid, dimwitted or moronic applies, since I agreed with your premise.

    This would be the inverse of I’m rubber you’re glue, what bounces off me sticks to you – not sure that worked. Perhaps I am a moron. Thanks for stopping by and I appreciated the comment and your piece @ http://jeffnolan.com/wp/2007/12/20/dude-wheres-my-market/


  • Reply Jeff Nolan December 23, 2007 at 10:23 am

    all in good humor 🙂 I long ago decided never to take blog comments or rebuttal posts personally.

    Merry Christmas!

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